Life as a school teacher in Oklahoma is many things… I finished up my Year One as an elementary music teacher in May, and I learned so much, gave so much, it’s a bit overwhelming to contextualize into words…

Haley Stocks Music Teacher in Oklahoma

So for some help with this post, I’d like to enlist the word “wild” as a supportive adjective to help define my experiences. Let’s check out some of its Merriam-Webster definitions, while keeping in mind how these might befit a first-year elementary music teacher’s classroom:

1. not ordinarily tame or domesticated (ha. haha.)
2. unruly (nah…)
3. deviating from the intended or expected course (as a first year teacher? never……)
4. indicative of strong passion, desire, or emotion (okayyy you caught me)

Okay! So it was wild. Now to push the word a bit further, let’s make an adverb out of it! (are we sure I taught music?)

Teacher Haley Stocks of Tahlequah

1. Wildly exciting, to be the sole individual responsible of making sure learning is happening.
2. Wildly surreal, to be in a walkout your first year of teaching in public education. *It was like  stepping up to bat in the seventh inning of the World Series (wearing pinstripes against the Red Sox, no doubt).*
3. Wildly satisfying, to offer a musical concept to young minds, to share knowledge with a child who has never heard what you’re sharing before. Also wildly thrilling. This gave me life this past year.
4. Wildly exhausting, constantly on the grind to create exciting ways for your students to experience everything you want them to.

I caught myself wishing all year that I already had a year of teaching under my belt. I’m ready to go back, stripes earned, for Year Two.